Pakistan bans more Web sites on religious grounds

It is monitoring some web sites and search engines for blasphemous content

Pakistan has blocked 17 Web sites and is closely monitoring seven other sites and search engines for content considered offensive and blasphemous, according to a spokesman of the country's telecommunications regulator, the Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA).

The PTA issued related orders on Friday to its licensed operators after receiving a directive from the country's Ministry of Information Technology, Khurram A. Mehran, a spokesman for the PTA said on Monday in an e-mail.

The move follows an order last week by the High Court of Lahore.

Among the seven sites being monitored are Yahoo, Google, YouTube, Amazon, MSN, Hotmail and Bing, according to media reports from Pakistan.

It is not clear how PTA intends to monitor all these sites, which have a large amount of online content.

Pakistan has recently stepped up monitoring and blocking of online content that is considered offensive to Islam.

Facebook was ordered blocked by the Lahore court in a separate case on May 19 after a lawyers' organization filed a petition objecting to a pageon the Web site called "Everybody Draw Mohammed Day!," which invited users to draw cartoons of Prophet Mohammed. Depictions of the Prophet are prohibited in some Muslim traditions.

YouTube was also blocked a day later for content that was considered "sacrilegious."

The block on Facebook was removed after the company agreed to prevent the offending pages from being viewed in Pakistan. The block on YouTube was also lifted, though the PTA continued to block content it considered offensive on the site. More than 450 other links on the Internet were also blocked in May as part of the order.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags internetFacebookyoutubecensorshipPakistan Telecommunications Authority

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Ribeiro

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Ada Chan

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

I highly recommend the Dynabook Portégé® X30L-G notebook for everyday business use, it is a benchmark setting notebook of its generation in the lightweight category.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?